GRANDBABY CAKES: Modern Recipes, Vintage Charm, Soulful Memories by Jocelyn Delk Adams

grandbabyPUBLISHER: Agate Surrey, 9/2015
GENRE: Cookbook/Baking

FROM PUBLISHER: Grandbaby Cakes: Modern Recipes, Vintage Charm, Soulful Memories is the debut cookbook from sensational food writer, Jocelyn Delk Adams. Since founding her popular recipe blog Grandbaby Cakes in 2012, Adams has been putting fresh twists on old favorites. Adams has earned praise from critics and the adoration of bakers both young and old for her easygoing advice, rich photography, and the heartwarming memories she shares of her family’s generations-old love of baking.

Readers will love this cookbook for its eclectic and bold recipes steeped in equal parts warm Southern charm and fresh Midwestern flavors. Not only will home bakers be able to make staples like yellow cake and icebox cake exactly how their grandmothers did, but they’ll also be preparing impressive innovations, like the Pineapple Upside-Down Hummingbird Pound Cake and the Fig-Brown Sugar Cake. Grandbaby Cakes is a collection for both new-aged and traditional bakers, but mostly it’s for anyone who wants a fresh, modern take on classic recipes as well as cakes full of heart and soul.

CATEGORIES: Pound Cakes, Layer Cakes, Sheet Cakes, Baby Cakes, Celebration Cakes, Seasons and Holidays




This chocolate cake is made with a small amount of cocoa powder and has cola and melted marshmallows in both the batter and frosting. The cake needs a little more cocoa, as you can see in the photo, salt, and wasn't quite as moist as I'd hoped it would be but seemed to get moister as it sat, covered, over the next two days. The cake itself had an odd flavor. It was more work than typical cola cakes, which don't require melting some of the cake ingredients. I like the frosting better than the cake and that too needed a bit of salt. This was a typical fudge frosting where you heat all the ingredients in a pot or microwave-safe bowl then stir in the powdered sugar the pour it over the cake. I couldn't taste the marshmallows at all but will definitely experiment with it in the future by doubling the amount of them in the frosting. I wouldn't make this cake ever again.


This cake is very very moist and dense. It has sour cream, butter, and a bit of vegetable oil in it. I didn't make the frosting that went with it. I made half in a 9" X 5" loaf pan and added poppy seeds just for looks. I used less lemon zest than it called for but it was enough. My cake sunk in the middle but that may have been my fault. It wasn't raw or gummy because of it and cooked normally there. I don't like how brown it got on all sides. No, it's not overbaked. I'm impressed with this cake and will add the recipe to my permanent collection.


This cake is make with a lot of Greek yogurt, oil, and lots of lemon juice. It tastes good, is moist, and I can actually taste the lemon juice in it. It needs a bit more salt. It's a bit spongy and I'm not happy with that. I made half the recipe. It was a lot of batter, too much for a 9" x 1 1/2" round pan, so I used one that was 9 1/2" x  2" round. It filled it completely. If you make half, just know that about the batter.

I added poppy seeds because I like how they look. I also used a bit of clementine zest and juice to make up for not having quite enough lemon juice but I can't taste it, which is disappointing. I made my own glaze for it (melted butter, vanilla extract, water, powdered sugar) and didn't use the recipe in the book. I wouldn't make this cake again because of it's texture. I could only get though two slices and someone else didn't like it so the rest got thrown in the trash.


This was very good but not quite sweet enough. It uses puréed strawberries and sour cream. I didn't use strawberry extract like the recipe stated and this cake needed a bit of it. I could taste strawberry without it. Just not quite enough. I made half the recipe in a 9" square pan and baked it for 26 minutes. FYI- 1 c. of strawberries turned into 1/2 c. puréed. The cake was supposed to have cream cheese frosting with coconut sprinkled on it but I made my own vanilla frosting, as I don't like cream cheese. I added 3/4 c. ground toasted coconut to the batter. This is a cake I'd make again and I'd add 2 1/4 t. poppy seeds to the cake batter.

MY THOUGHTS: I'd be lying if I said I wasn't disappointed in this book. There's a pretty good variety of cakes but there's not much more I'd make of out it but two or three more. Only two of the four I made were decent tasting and I'm not really comfortable making anything more from this. The layer cakes look like a whole lot of work, too elaborate, like the one on the cover.

It's physically a beautiful book but it's not for me, I guess.

I received this from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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